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18 O c t o b e r 5 ' 1 7

18 O c t o b e r 5 ' 1 7 H A N N A / C o r o n a t i o n / S t e t t l e r , A b . E C A r e v i e w 17101TA1

E C A r e v i e w A G r i c u L t u r e H A N N A / C o r o N A t i o n / S t e t t l e r , A b O c t o b e r 5 ' 1 7 19 What are my fencing obligations? Agri-News The Stray Animals Act, Line Fence Act, Public Lands Act, and Surveys Act all affect how farmland fencing issues are handled in Alberta. “Under the Stray Animals Act, a landowner is responsible for keeping his livestock properly fenced and contained,” says Jeana Schuurman, rural engagement and communications specialist, Farmers’ Advocate Office. “If damage is caused by cattle trespassing onto another property, the owner of the cattle is responsible for the damage. Stray cattle are dealt with by Livestock Identification Services (LIS). They can be called at 1-866-509- 2088 to capture and confine the livestock.” A landowner’s obligations under the Line Fence Act are closely tied with responsibilities under the Stray Animals Act. “The basic principle of the Line Fence Act is that if both landowners benefit from the fence, they should share the costs, which include the costs for erection, maintenance, and repair of the fence” says Schuurman. “In this legislation, benefit is determined by having livestock on the land. If one landowner has needs above and beyond what would be normal, they’re responsible for the additional cost. “Many people also don’t realize is that if a tree falls and damages a fence, the owner of the property where the tree is located is responsible for the fence repairs.” Under the Public Lands Act, all water in Alberta is owned by the Crown, even if it is located on private land. “A landowner may use the water for livestock, but should keep in mind the obligation to prevent animals from straying under the Stray Animals Act,” says Schuurman. “Fencing near water has to strike the balance of confining the livestock and not violating the federal Navigation Protect Act, which stipulates that ‘works’ (including fences) cannot be constructed in a water body.” Under the Surveys Act, surveys can be helpful if there is a dispute over the location of a fence. “Some older fences can be off the property lines due to old technologies for surveying, or a desire to avoid bush or treed areas,” explains Schuurman. Alberta Agriculture and Forestry’s inspection and investigation unit addresses compliance issues and resolves disputes regarding the Line Fence Act and can be contacted directly at 403-755-1474. The Line Fence Act also provides the option of pursuing a resolution through arbitration, which is faster than the courts and produces a binding decision. For more information, contact the Ag Info Centre at 310-FARM (3276). KEEPING TRACK IN A CHANGING MARKETPLACE AFREA has been busy keeping up with developments in the electricity sector and advocating on behalf of our member REAs. Listed below with a summary description, are a few of the items we have been working on and information about the regulatory bodies we interact with when we represent you. 1. The Market Surveillance Administrator is reviewing the Regulated Rate Option at Alberta Energy’s request. On June 1, 2017, the Regulated Rate Option was capped at $0.068/kWh through passage of Bill 16 in the Legislative Assembly. The AFREA continues to provide feedback on this change and is working closely with the MSA. 2. FortisAlberta Inc. has applied for an order from the Alberta Utilities Commission to: a) confirm its service areas on land annexed by municipalities, and b) compel REAs to turn over wires, substations, and their corresponding members. AUC Proceeding 22164 is ongoing. It directly involves three REAs that are AFREA members. The AFREA is representing its members and one additional REA in disputing this application. We have engaged legal counsel and technical consulting expertise to assist us. 3. The Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) is tasked with investigating distribution-connected generation. Proceeding 22534 involves how renewable (solar, wind, hydro) and alternative energy sources could be expanded in Alberta to produce electricity close to power users. The AFREA is participating as a key stakeholder in this proceeding, at the request of the AUC. 4. In June 2017, the AUC approved changes to Rule 024: Rules Respecting Micro-Generation. The AFREA has represented our members’interests in this Consultation. The Rule changes were effective July 4, 2017. After 75 years in the business, the environment has likely never been more complex than it is now. Even in these far-reaching scenarios, we have not mentioned all the agencies involved in running Alberta’s electricity industry. While we ask for member input into these cases, we recognize it’s a zoo—not just technical detail, but of too many acronyms and players to keep track of. But it is possible. Here’s a list of “who’s who” to detangle it for you. Thank you to our member REAs for representing their members and the unique nature of their REA when providing input. It will continue to be needed! Please keep reading your E-News for updates in these matters. You can influence the future of all REAs by staying engaged in this way. KEY ELECTRICITY PLAYERS IN ALBERTA Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC): Our principal regulator—the AUC operates with many of the same powers as a court of law. Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO): The AESO operates the provincial power grid 24/7 by dispatching the power sold by generators. Balancing Pool: The Balancing Pool is an independent corporation created to market power from older generation contracts that were unsold after the electricity market was deregulated. Market Surveillance Administrator (MSA): The MSA monitors the wholesale electricity, retail electricity, and natural gas markets investigating issues that come to its attention through surveillance or complaints. Utilities Consumer Advocate (UCA): The UCA represents, informs, and educates consumers on electricity (utility) matters. 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